1- In less than a minute, tell us who you are and why we keep hearing good things about you.
I am a 57 year old white woman living in Mexico who primarily teaches about end of life care, drawing not only on two plus decades of professional experience but also on three catastrophic deaths of intimate family members over four years. I am passionate about supporting people in the end of life and grieving process.
I think my greatest gift, and why people are drawn to me, is that I am very, very real. I am extremely knowledgeable about yoga philosophy, Vedanta, and conventional clinical practice, as well as the intersections of yoga and Christian mysticism, yet my delivery is uniquely down to earth and authentic. People say they feel seen and supported around me, and I think that is because I have seen a lot of life and by both nature and practice, I am radically open and accepting of the unique experiences and life paths of others.
2- What inspired you, if any, to join the Warrior Flow 200-Hour Yoga Training’s faculty?
When i met Adrian on the Bedside Yoga training, I was immediately drawn to him, his work and philosophy and saw a lot in him that was much like me and my journey. I have been the leader of so many trainings and projects and am ready to be in a place where I am not the leader, but that I can support people who are doing incredible work. I was really honored when Adrian asked me to be part of the faculty.
3- In simple words, what does yoga mean to you?
I often call Patanjali's yoga "the original cognitive behavioral therapy." For me, yoga is a lifelong spiritual and philosophical practice. It is a way of viewing the world, ourself, and life's greatest challenges. Having studied other mystic traditions, I also love that yoga is the only one that truly has movement and embodiment as an essential part of the practice, as a gateway to understanding ourselves on deeper and deeper levels, and training us to become more attuned to and discerning of the fluctuations in the body and mind in order to steer us towards god presence.
4- What is the main difference between learning yoga now and when you took your first yoga training?
When I learned yoga, there weren't a lot of teacher trainings, people were not talking about it as a healing modality, and there was not so much focus on "200 hours!" or the "style" of yoga you were doing. It seemed like the teachers back then also had long, long practices, and deep relationships with esteemed (by them) teachers, who also had long and deep practices. Now it feels like yoga is kind of watered down, and at the same time that "everything is yoga!" which I actually do not believe.
5- In your opinion, why is this a key moment in time to learn yoga?
I'm not sure it is. I think anytime is a key time to learn yoga.
6- Who would you be without yoga?
7- Who were your role models? And what pushed you to learn and become who you are today?
I have so many role models, but in this particular realm, my primary inspirations are Swami Vivekananda, Ram Dass, and my parents.
8- What were the pivotal roadblocks and challenges you encountered along the way that helped you define your path?
I think the hardest thing for me was understanding and accepting that I was at once a visionary, creating new models, pushing boundaries, challenging norms and trying to provide access to yoga to as many people as I possibly could, and that for whatever reason, I would never be "famous," never be in the yoga "in-crowd" never be the one who was recognized in any way for my contributions as many of the programs and projects I initiated became mainstream with other great teachers being recognized for their work and role. That was hard on my ego and at times discouraging. Through my relatively recent traumas and life changes, i have come to peace with that reality, and more than anything, has allowed me to just focus on being myself, honing my teaching and not looking for recognition or accolades.
9- What can we all do right now to make this world a better place?